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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  February 28, 2010 11:00am-12:00pm EST

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that means doing something about the large-scale corruption be seen in government officials involved in the narcotics trade as well as individual involved in large-scale extortion and bribery usually about major contracts and a large amounts of cash, not just about police checkpoints on the road. this is a large amount of money that is being used. and i think it's actually parley fueling the insurgency because it's separating the local population from a government they view as illegitimate to some degree. ..
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thanks for joining us. if you'd like to participate in our conversation this evening we're going to but the numbers up on the screen. 202-737-0001 for those of you in the east and central time zones. 202-737-0002 if you live in the mountain or pacific time >> you can also send us an e-mail at booktv at or a tweak at slash booktv. here's a little bit more about our guest. we'll start with mark moyar. is also a professor along with the author is also a professor at the marine corps university and his written a couple of books, including his "a question of command." and also written "phoenix and
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the birds of prey: counterinsurgency and counterterrorism in vietnam," and "triumph forsaken: the vietnam war, 1954-1965". doctor moyer has served in, has been several times to afghanistan, our other guest is seth jones author of "in the graveyard of empires." is also a political scientist at the rand corporation and a professor at georgetown university. mark moyar, we been in afghanistan now eight and a half years. is there an in game to the? >> i think there is, and it's taken us a long time to get there. in the early years for one thing there didn't seem to be much violence or need to focus on. of course we had iraq and the insurgency didn't get going until 2005 on a large-scale. and then we were slowed to react. we have tried for several years to sort of ramp up the afghan forces quickly, but again it was a quantity bush over quality. and that's also again gets to
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the issue talk about corruption. the corruption starts with commanders on the afghan side because at some level they are tolerating this. and for too long we have sort of let them sort this out. but just in the past few months we've seen some and converging examples where we are starting to prosecute people for corruption, governors, police chiefs. as i mentioned, we have just upgraded a training mission to a three-star general, general caldwell. again, you're announcing our best and brightest going over there. for a while most of them are going to iraq. general caldwell, general mcchrystal, some of our top officers. so i think we are going to see a turning point in this year. >> i think we're beginning to see what looks like the u.s. and afghans in nato more broadly potentially moving towards a tipping point. i mean, what's interesting again is we see a major effort and how much. there will be very soon a fence
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in qatar province as well. and what's interesting is over the last really seven years in particular, the taliban leadership, the afghan taliban leadership has been able to operate in pakistan, especially in lucas didn't province another neighboring provinces. with impunity. the command-and-control structure has existed across. this week we've now seen a company come public information about the taliban leadership, including shadow governors now being targeted in pakistan. this becomes a systematic effort. this begins to i think changed again in pakistan because this means that no one out is safe for the taliban leadership. >> what was the point up of pronouncing our intentions for this weeks military actions? >> i think they knew the taliban were going to figure it out. they are very good at surveillance and they would've seen this massive troop movement
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far in advance that i don't think we've lost much for the element of surprise that it enabled us to set the groundwork with the local population. shortly before the offensive we had a lot of meetings with the local elders, which i think approved very beneficial because you are seeing them now cooperating with us even as the offensive is ongoing, and also important to help make sure we had all the afghan leadership on board. >> if i can add one thing to what mark said. and he pointed this out, i just want to emphasize it. in my view, the focus and around this area, would not be the military operations. the development side but also the political effort. when i've been to marcia, what you see in march is a range of travel committee leaders that have a hold on power. they range from different
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leaders. part of the negotiations have been a course if possible the allegiance and influence of these key powerbrokers. this will be a major struggle where power is very decentralized. this will be a major struggle over the next couple of months because the taliban as they have done historically will try to coerce the same individuals as well. >> find it before we go to calls, questions from both of you. seth jones, what if we left afghanistan, what would happen? >> well, in my personal view, the taliban in particular and the groups allied with it would probably slowly come assuming they were backed by states in the region, there is some state support for iran and pakistan, would probably take increasing tracts of territory. it's difficult to know how long that would take, but i think they will clearly make a push to
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take kabul at some point. and as we've seen in the past, especially some of the insurgents is now, very, very close alliance with al qaeda in north waziristan. to potentially see training camps at some point with foreign fighters and other groups. so i would say based on the relationship now between some of the insurgent groups and foreign fighters, we would be somewhere around where the u.s. was in the late 1990s and early 2000. afghanistan is being used as a training area, as parts of pakistan or for that matter. >> mr. moyar? >> i agree with the. and also emphasized that you have to look at what would happen if pakistan. pakistan is very much watching what we're doing in afghanistan as a signal of our intention. and also would make it much more difficult for us to do with that government.
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nuclear power, there's lots of reasons to be concerned about deterioration in pakistan. >> our first call comes from norton, virginia. nancy is on the line. please go ahead, nancy. >> caller: i wanted to follow-up on what professor moyar said about long-term development in afghanistan. i am wondering if either gentleman is someone with great book three cups of tea? and there is a quote described in that book that was used as a dowry, which means it has economic value. and what either of the gentlemen know if our state department or department of agriculture is considering getting foot pedal style singer sewing machine to the women in the afghan region to try to change the sociology there? thank you. >> seth jones? >> there are a range of efforts actually by the state department, especially u.s. agency for international
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development at the afghan ministry of rural rehabilitation and development to pursue a development strategy that is in line with military efforts. and that is, that in areas that have been pacified are actually there is that already relatively peaceful to provide a range of development projects that we see up in the north. there have been efforts effectively that i've seen up close to get women involved in making carpets, for example. long-term sustainable work for women. so there are a range of projects as you look across northern, western, eastern, southern afghanistan. part of the question is, are they quick impact or is it, are there long-term focus? and then frankly in the areas i would say that are most vulnerable to the insurgency and that are most insecure, there are also in my view have to a
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counterinsurgency part of that. in other words, they have to help encourage the population to oppose insurgent as well. because otherwise as we've seen, insurgents will intimidate. they will destroy in some cases, a developer and project. so i think they have been effective in some cases. where they been able to be stable over the long run, and also where they have been involved in really helpful, long-term counterinsurgency partner as well. >> mark moyar, are we nationbuilding? >> depends on what you mean by nationbuilding. i think we are to some extent changing their institutions. i think perhaps more important we are trying to build a national culture there. which has been weak in the past that one of the things i got the opportunity to see, spent time looking at the national military academy. and they are actually with 18-year-olds, they're doing a very good job of bringing
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together people from diverse ethnic groups and provinces together, and instilling a sense of nationalism. i think we're making progress there. that is a long-term effort. you're not going to do the same thing with a 40 year-old. but i think that in a long-term where we're going to make progress. younger generation of afghans who will see the importance of the nationstate and are going to be more virtuous and avoid things like corruption. >> ginnie in portland, oregon, please go had. >> caller: is this peter? >> yes. comic you're a workaholic, but that's not what i call. you do a good job. i want you in the morning times. but i had to quickly as i was going to ask either of the gas. the first question is, how important is marjah to the taliban? we hear a lot. really, how important is it? is it going to hurt them, short-term, long-term? and then the number two question
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is, they've been growing poppy for a long, long time. and because it's easy, it's low maintenance, and why can't we buy that from them, turn that into morphine? bear in a war zone. people are getting hurt, when you go to a hospital or doctor, i predict they don't even have morphine. >> mark moyar? >> let me talk about the first question you had. i do think marjah is important militarily. and if you look at, one thing they would like to have is a sanctuary area. and that is what they've had in marjah. they been able to process opium there. they been able to build i need these, and doing those things it's a lot harder when you're up in a cage or running around the hills somewhere. and we know this in any insurgent will tell you that that they like areas to rest and
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recuperate. so it's important to take this away from them. it is their last real big essentially and afghanistan. and of course we have to do with the pakistan sanctuaries, but it is clearly something that we don't want to allow them to have anywhere. and i think, you know, it's not going to be the end-all. but more important to clueing it is going to be holding it. but it's important to deny them sanctuary. >> and what about the poppy question, seth jones? >> well, i think there been a number of efforts to try and deal with the poppy issue. there have been effective efforts in the east of afghanistan to get farmers to actually grow other things, including wheat, fruit in some areas of anbar province because there are those options. the problem we have right now in the south in parts of comp are and home and were poppy is grown is that nato forces and afghan forces don't control the
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territory, at least jobs of the territory. so it almost makes it moot whether you buy it or not because they don't control the territory. and the taliban controls, owns in some cases some of the land. taxes are for doing it and runs the key trade routes. along key roads where the narcotics is taken. so the first step in much of the south where most of the poppy is grown, actually has to be first to control the territory. and then we can get into the question about doesn't make sense to buy it doesn't make sense to try and get farmers to grow other things like weeds or to look at other options. >> does it make sense? >> to buy a? >> no, to grow other thinks. >> answered is. the central ripple belly, they were involved in the 1950s and agricultural production. and that era is a hotbed our has
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historic a been a hotbed for a range of different types of produce, including wheat as well as different fruits and vegetables. there clearly is an option. >> district heights maryland, good evening. >> caller: how you doing, peter? how you'd doing? my comment is on will the war ever stop? and do you all understand that god is watching every step and progress? and when he said that shalt love our neighbor, and thou shall love myself, and we are the brothers of this planet, and we're here to multiply. >> where you going with this question? what would you like our to afghanistan war office to address with that question? >> caller: i would like to hear their joyful expression on that question. do they believe in change?
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>> is there anything there you would like to address a? >> let me talk about the question of is this war ever going to end. i think is a good question because the american people have patience in this war. i do think we can get to a point where the insurgency is brought down to a nuisance level. probably will be an ongoing level of violence, but the key here is to develop afghan security forces to the point, to the point where they can handle these insurgents and without american combat troops. and so, i think if we can get to that point, it becomes a nuisance level of violence that i think then we will have succeeded war and it would essentially be over. >> i've got two additional points, and i think it's worth remembering, that if you look at the taliban regime during the
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1990s, up to september 11, 2001, and did you see it right now, what you see is one of the most repressive regimes that we have seen that regularly violate basic human rights, in the view of women. it's a large-scale operation of beheadings of individuals. part of what we're dealing with is a range of militant movements, i think, that are have been very brutal. for the u.s. to withdraw, i think it would subject the afghan population to the same sort of barbarities that they had to face during the 1990s that the other thing i would also note is this is the area where u.s. and other western intelligence agencies indicate that the core al qaeda element remains, osama bin laden, and others. so i think the caller is absolutely -- this has to end.
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pieces are important that the afghans have suffered tremendous amount here. we're also getting i would argue with some groups whose behavior in the past has been very abusive. >> next call for our two guests, seth johnson mark moyar, comes from kim in pocatello, idaho. >> good eating, gentlemen. i just have a couple of question. you know, i'm a retired military, you know, it befuddles me on the fact that our going to continue to finance this war, number one, and number two, do you really believe down deep you know, i'm even going to come to a solution? i just listen to what you said and is probably the first intelligent thing i've heard about this war. but you know, are we really going to be able to accomplish you do, what we set out to do? >> i think we are going to be able to develop an afghanistan
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that is self-sufficient, in terms of personnel. as i mentioned, if we can draw down the number of foreign troops, i think we will be in good shape. but i think and public opposition, once that happens in a we have to keep a. there's an important question how long i'm going to keep funding the afghans, because as we build up their saturday forces would also raise their pay. and the cost of maintaining these forces is going to become very high and what is the afghan government and its current form may not be able to pay for at any point. so we will have to come up with a way to draw down those forces eventually. i think we are going to be too continued some investment in that country for a long time. we pulled out after the soviets left, and let things deteriorate. and i think we can't completely withdraw from there again. a little bit more from mark moyar's foreign policy magazine article. more
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>> how many afghanistan troops are fighting alongside u.s. troops right now? and how many u.s. troops are currently over there? >> we are now moving into a position with essentially try to have all the afghan army forces partnered with our forces. again, because there's a number of reasons that it helps us because they have better reports for the populace. they can get intelligence. on the other hand, we can divide them with assistance and a lot of areas where they're just not capable of. and we are moving me and more towards this concept of partnering and we have seen it and marjah.
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every marine is partnered. but there surely is a danger that they're going to become overly dependent on us. and part of how we get around that is having the right american who takes the time to work with his afghan counterpart. again, it is going to be a struggle. we saw in iraq. we tried to keep turning things over to the iraqi's, 2005-2006. it didn't work. the same things happened in afghanistan. so we're going to have to, we are taken on a larger role working with them more closely because we can't allow them to fail. but in the long-term we're going to have to figure out ways to withdraw. as we've done i think there will and iraq to gradually let them take responsibility. >> and, seth jones, to go back to that caller's point, are we ever going to get out of there, are we ever going to win, and the name of your book, "in the graveyard of empires." >> well, i think what's interesting is foreign governments, whether it is the
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three british wars, whether it was the soviet invasion that began in 1979, has been pretty clear that foreign governments have had a very difficult time stabilizing afghanistan. but between 1929 and 1978, and there was period of stability. so what is clear is that afghans to have a history of stabilizing their country. there have been recent stable periods. i think the issue for us, as we look at trying to create a stable afghanistan, relatively stable afghanistan, is one where we increasingly as mark noted, have afghans both at the central government but also the local government level doing the bulk of that work. if i could just add one thing, you know, we have often thought of and over the last eight years there's been a concept of trying
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to do this entirely from the top down, from the central government. i would also argue that there is never, ever been a history in afghanistan in rural areas where the central government has provided long-term stability. so we have to remember that we're not dealing with a traditional western state. >> and from "in the graveyard of empires" you write this. a second step is to find a better bounce between top down ever to build a viable central government and bottom-up efforts to support local actors. overcritical for establishing security and providing public services. charles, missouri i believe this. go ahead with your question for our guests. >> caller: good evening, gentle and. this has been alluded to before, and as long as we throw money at the two governments, iraq and afghanistan, we quit throwing money at them they're going to go back to the tribal affairs, or whatever, and here we are,
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wasted all this money, started during the bush administration. and worst, all the persons that have been killed and wounded. that's really terrible. just remember, and i think one of you alluded to this before, once we leave, they're going to go back to the same old same old. i'd like your comment, please. and good health to you all. >> seth jones. >> that's a good question. and a good. i would note that if you look at the last 100 years and afghanistan, there are and have been stable periods so part of the question for the united states for nato, countries operating in afghanistan, and for the afghan government more broadly, is to find ways as has been done in afghanistan's history, of ensuring long-term stability. what i would note in posh to areas of the country, the bill that goes from herat to western afghanistan down to the south
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and into the piece, pashtuns are the largest tribal groups in afghanistan. power has been very decentralized there. the posh didn't have a tendency and will areas to want to do a lot of the policing at the lowest level. on their own. we see them use security forces. i think part of it as we move forward, as a look toward more stable solutions, we've got to think about top down efforts to build a stronger central government, as mark noted earlier, with nash canned security forces. and with a velvet efforts that would've of our previous guest noted. as well as a bottom-up efforts to work with local, key local legitimate institutions in pashtun areas, shuras and jerk is. so i think you look at the history can, there have been model for stability. and we just need to look carefully at those.
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and to kind of build on that point, aren't you ignoring how the pashtuns are the majority tribe and they aren't represented compared to the minority tribe? >> well, i would take the president, of course, is in that range. the minister of defense is from warlock province and pashtuns. so that are, the president has tried to balance some of the keep pashtuns that he is one again as well, with some individuals from the northern alliance. but i think about what we saw in the early period in 2002002, we've got more of a representation of pashtuns and the government. what we don't have yet, and what we need to do is start finding a way to incorporate taliban pashtuns into this government, some respect. this is that we call
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reconciliation. we're going to have to reach some sort of agreement with those individuals that want to switch sides on being able to pull those individuals who have been fighting against the government. and most of them are pashtuns. >> mark moyar, an e-mail. i am a mom to to iraq war veterans at, and although i'm very proud of their service to our country, i can tell but wonder why we are sending more and more troops into afghanistan. it seems like all i keep hearing about lately is how difficult it is to train afghan soldiers, as many are illiterate and turn the other way when the fighting is going on. military solution to the problem cannot be the answer. it just seems like an impossible task with our soldiers being caught in the middle, being injured and dying almost on a daily basis. >> we were saying the same thing in iraq a couple of years ago that this was a hopeless situation. and we're at a time now which i think hopefully we will be seen
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as a turning point going forward, but i do think it has been very valuable already to have these extra troops there. as you mentioned, you need to deny them sanctuary areas, if you don't have enough troops, what happens is and we saw this in iraq before the surge, you go include one area, take control, the insurgency move to another area. and it became a game of whack a mole. the same thing is happening in afghanistan now. the other thing i would add is through the partnering effort, our american forces are having multiplying effect on the afghans. what i mean, for example, there are cases where you will have 40 afghan policemen and you take and american troops and put them with those. those 40 may been very ineffective before. when you add the 10 americans, they bring a lot of expertise. they keep an eye and make sure things are being done and
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probably. and so instead just ain't as 10 americans, you also have 40 more afghan troops who were determining much before who are now. >> this is booktv in prime time. we're talking about the afghanistan war tonight with mark moyar and seth jones. you are there book. mark moyar, "a question of command." seth jones, "in the graveyard of empires." what's this picture on the front of your book? >> the soviet tank sitting in an afghan field, just a reminder of the soviet expense in afghanistan. partly to learn the lessons of the soviet. >> mark moyar, you've written quite a bit about vietnam. arthur comparison? >> there are some comparisons, certainly. lots of similarities, lots of differences. one of the things i like to point out the people, we often invoke the idea of afghanistan being another vietnam as it is hopeless. and i argue here and my other books on vietnam that there are actually people were pretty successful.
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1962-1963 made a lot of progress in can't insurgency which was undone by the two that we orchestrate against the south vietnamese president. and also after, you have some very effective counterinsurgency so that by the end of the war, it's no longer an insurgency that is a conventional threat. so i think it is a myth that insurgencies are all powerful and there's nothing we can do to stop them. >> seth jones, we spend about $680 billion on the vietnam war in today's dollars. about the same that we spent in iraq. how much have we spent in afghanistan, 979 servicemembers have lost their lives so far. . .
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taliban right now so one of the things at least has been helpful on the afghan context is that burden sharing has been much more acute in afghanistan then it was an iraq where we really do have a lot more partner nations that are providing -- the japanese have just ended up several billion dollars again were reintegration of a senior level taliban official. >> host: new york city, you're on the air column backed
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>> caller: i have a question and for mr. seth jones. i have read this your book and commend you, one major problem is that we are still in dealing with a conflict of north and south just like in many other places. in the center for global crisis in 2003 put an excellent paper called disenchantment of pashtuns. how're you going to win the hearts and minds of the afghans when the well-known african proverb says, you probably know it, it says: if you can make an afghan and go to hell with you with kindest which will not be able to take him to heaven by force.
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>> guest: well, that's a great question and a great point. i would say that one of the things that they afghan governments and nato more broadly as to do better on including in pashtuns areas is two recognize again in that power is very localized in these areas and that they may not act according to the interests of outsiders whether it is u.s. tornado government even whether the central government. they will act in their own interest and that's okay because what we see i would argue you look out across the east and the south is a range of tribes and some tribes and plans whether it is to worry or others, they don't like the taliban, don't like the network, don't like most of the surging groups and had it with them and, and they would like to stabilize, secure and provide services to their
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own populations. i think in that sense we need to recognize they are not doing it for us, they're doing it for their own populations, that's okay. in this case we can help them help their own populations and i think that's actually important because this is not always have to be about the central government especially in pashtuns areas. we've seen a recent public opinion poll that came out by abc and bbc which indicated that the taliban and is well under 10 percent support to versus 90 percent support in the recent poll so leveraging, desires and interest of the local population i think is quite critical. >> host: james, houston texas, hello. >> caller: thank you for taking my call. my question is going to center on the proliferation of the radical people that are cropping
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up in the pashtuns region of pakistan in the afghanistan. with an air wing version of islam promoting jihad and with the influence from the saudi and persian gulf entities financing in this school's which also have military training seem to be giving to the taliban a new group of writers -- what are we doing as a nation or a group of nations to get these countries. >> off and support of the school's? >> host: mark moyar. >> guest: i think we argue behind working behind these issues and it's important matter and as you mentioned a lot of the insurgents are coming out of these madrassas. we've also talked about other efforts to promote education in a rural afghanistan. you've hit on one of the earlier caller is mentioning other question about three cups of tea
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in can use that approach and i think he has done great work in schools that are critically important but i would add that you can't just be the insurgents for education because we seen in case after case in vietnam's from a prime example as well as all seven or, if you just send in the teachers' the insurgents are going to kill them or force them to flee because they fully recognize that those people are a threat so we need to do the education peace but in conjunction a closely coordinated with security and government. >> host: in early december president obama announced additional 30,000 troops on top of the 68,000 or so that were already there. how many have moved over? >> guest: i'm not sure the exact number. they're certainly more coming in the spring, i believe there's a marine entire regimental command team has scheduled to come in in a couple months here. but clearly it's interesting to
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compare them to the size of the iraq insurgency similar to deployments size. i do think they are starting to make a difference as i mentioned it in helmand. there are playing a critical role and we're going to see more can are coming up this year. it's not just 30,000 americans but you've got to factor in the number of afghans being empowered by having those americans working alongside them. >> host: . >> guest: i think the biggest trends we are seeing now is just of itsto his point forces out of the south. the taliban are planned, the center of gravity or that taliban leaders are from and handed over to the canadians and a. and the dutch and australians. unless some special forces. now what we're seeing is the area were increasing its forces in general is in the south. this is the taliban heartlands
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on not only are increasing forces, we are going with three horses and army strikers into the heartland of the taliban so that's an increase in the numbers but also location of those forces as well. >> host: what is your role as an advisor to general crystal? >> guest: i served in 2009 as a officer adviser to u.s. military looking at a whole range of issues for the military in afghanistan. >> host: you just got back, did you meet with its general mcchrystal went over there? >> guest: i worked with general mcchrystal barely regularly. >> host: where is he based them what kind of security does he he? what's it like to get in to see him? is mackie is based in kabul for the isaf is located. he actually gets around on a compound in quite easily. he's somebody who in general has a strategy that is very population centric. he's a very people oriented
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person. he is a very proudly, he takes that strategy and personalizes it into interactions with individuals so it's interesting to watch. >> host: does he ever get off base? does karzai ever get out? >> guest: there is no question about that general -- general mcchrystal like every major u.s. and nato military commander gets out quite a bit. it's out into rural areas, into urban areas where it meets the population. in fact, general mcchrystal has been very adamant about getting out regularly. president karzai has not gotten out a lot. he does occasionally get out without the presidential campaign. but he has not gotten out and interaction with the active population currently for security reasons. his helicopters have been targeted in the past and there have been several assassination attempts against him so is
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constrained his movements whose back is abdullah abdullah still in afghanistan or has he laughed? >> guest: i'm not sure where he is. i want to comment on the question you mentioned, the reason i went out last month was that general call well is starting in leadership initiative on the afghan side and wants to get into more discussion about leadership which i think we have not paid enough attention to and one of the things we have seen for many of the afghans is they don't go out to the field as much as we would like. khalaf want to do things by themselves and at the same time they micromanage, there will be in their office but telling someone what to do hundreds of miles away so one of the points i make in the book is case after case in the philippines and vietnam, they spent a lot of their time out there circulating going out and see what's going
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on and also assessing their local commanders saying this person is doing a good job and also providing some coaching of the commanders. >> host: mike in l.a., good evening. >> caller: i would like to know during world war i and world war ii when the west was all over the middle east, why didn't they try to make afghanistan a ming focal point increase stability in western government then when they were already there is that of waiting so long having to deal with it now? >> guest: that's a good question the u.s. actually was relatively weak in that area. even though it was involved in some areas of the middle east, the biggest power is in the region by far was british, british had a major presence especially in the area of india. as well as the russians soviets and afghanistan during that time
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was primarily serving as an area of competition between the british and the soviets by the 1950's saw about a decade after world war ii you did see a major increase in the u.s. presence there especially on the development side and to go into places like hell man or kandahar provinces in the southeast dulce today areas like the arms, the whole central helmand river valley for the u.s. contribution of the time was on its the millman level and youtill see a lot of that infrastructure still there today. >> host: another tweak, why is the handoff of the background prisons to act in control receiving so little political inquiry in the west? >> guest: that's a good question. and we have seen a lot of problems with detainees, the same thing in iraq and he probably knows more about the
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brown case or a lead him comment on that piece but in iraq we had a lot of problems with huge numbers of people being arrested and inadequate facilities to train them and initially we had some commanders addressing massive amounts of people and when i was there there was concern about who was being led out of these prisons and iraq. and i think there's ongoing concern today and they've been letting a lot of people out. especially now that our presence in iraq has subsided they're having trouble tracking these people. iraq i think is the future uncertain. we have talked about the ethnic problems there in the sunni vs shia, will that blow up again. i don't think anyone knows that pressure. >> host: anything you want to add about the prison? >> guest: i would just don't i think there has to -- one of the lessons from iraq in the decent treatment of prisoners.
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and when you look at how the web sites in the recruitment policies of a lot of the g -- groups now, they use the photographs that came from the prison for reprove purposes. there was an extraordinarily -- of implication will start to go down that road and so as we move forward on interment facilities i think there have to be my sense is that there is solely an improvement in the way prisoners are treated. >> host: michael, chicago, good evening. >> caller: how is it going. i appreciate you taking my call. hopefully this is in somewhat of a loaded question so bear with me. in our opinion,, do think it is the you to take the charlie wilson thought saying if we had not left these folks -- dry after we pushed the soviets out of afghanistan that we would be
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in this quote unquote to mess we're in now? second part of that question and, i hope it is not loaded, clearly north alliance before we wind in these folks are pretty skeptical about the commitment the u.s. had. what are these folks doing, to make sure we maintain our credibility? a lot of folks say the usaid etc., but i am sure in afghanistan and i have a long memory i'd be thinking about these folks have been two this report and what will stop after they've exerted there will? >> guest: that's a great question. i can tell you how many times i got asked that question in continue to it asked by afghan, pakistan and the region. i think it was a problem that the u.s. and ultimately the soviets got out of afghanistan because what we saw in the
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central government collapsing by the early 1990's and the afghanistan moving to a direction literally of anarchy, competition among warlords and their militia forces. as the u.s. played a more direct role in brokering an agreement and trying to settle the disagreements on the major actors? i think it could have ensured long term stability. so part of what the united states has to signal now has become a little more difficult with a 2011 deadline and announced to some degree although there's some flexibility. it committing, developing age, and forcing a long term to the region and i think it has done a pretty good job of convincing the afghan pakistan governments as well as others in the region is committed to the long run to the stability of afghanistan and part of that is actually working with neighbors.
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the russians, the indians, the afghan and the chinese, the iranians to some degree as well because as we have learned his starkly the neighbors have a large stake in afghanistan as well. >> guest: i would say what i was there last month there was a paramount of concern over the july 2011 deadline that has been set and everyone over there is doing an excellent job of reassuring them and that that doesn't mean we're going to have a massive withdrawal but i think it's important asset in this country about afghanistan it's important that the president and members of congress are out there talking about the firmness of our commitments and i think we can do more in that area to reassure them. there's an argument to be made that we put a time line that will force them to get their act together and i think there certain amount of that but i don't think we're proud to that point.
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you do that when there is a firmer footing and we need to send a message that we're going to be there for the long term and i tend to agree with president karzai tie line, it's going to be five years to get them to the point where they can take over most of the security. that may be a progressive but i think that is good in. >> host: washington d.c., you're on the air. >> caller: i enjoyed the program here that i will make a quick question and hopefully it's a good question and i will hang up and listen to the answer who exactly is with the taliban because my point is this, i don't believe i would be funding them because -- afghanistan . >> host: we caught the basis of your question about funding the taliban, sari, yourself on was fading out. let's talk about who is funding the taliban and the activities of other countries outside
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players? we will start with you mr. jones. >> guest: well, the taliban had done a pretty good job of getting redundancy in financing. so -- it gets funding from a range of types of behavior. a gets money from the drug trade including taxes against farmers, taxiing the movement of poppy along major roadways and also gets support from those collected at mosques from major donors and the arab world. including wealthy donors from saudi arabia, the united arab emirates and other locations. not states aboard but wealthy donors but it also has gotten support to and continues to get support, on the taliban case despite the fact that iran nearly went to war with the taliban at the end of 1990's,
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iran has provided some low-level support to the taliban and other in surging groups -- state support. the every new revolutionary guards as well as elements of the pakistan government inter-services intelligence directors. if so there have been states supports. if so interestingly this arrest of the taliban second-in-command recently in has been a noble or at least brings up the question of whether there's a shift in pakistan policy toward the taliban. >> guest: i think that's an excellent summary. the only thing i would add it is mentioning how leadership is crucial in terms of afghan security force in terms of an iraqi security forces and its crucial in terms of the taliban. they don't have a huge foreign presence but we do know some of their commanders are pakistan or other countries and those people are very important. in many cases they are more important than large amount of
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money because we've seen some very militarily skillful taliban forces and that's not an accident. there are getting some good leaders from pakistan and elsewhere and that's part of why addressing the pakistan initiative is crucial. >> host: let's talk specifically than about pakistan. it sounds a little schizophrenic that if the had other isin is supporting the taliban efforts but they're also aren't allies, is that -- did i say that correctly? >> guest: you did. the pakistan government intended to act in its own interests as any state would appear in a targeted military groups that threaten the state so they've targeted al qaeda, the fighters on the territory and held capture khalid sheikh mohammed in a range of others. they also increasingly targeted what some people call the pakistan taliban base that of the south waziristan in a range
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of other military. they've conducted operations in areas where militant groups targeted conducted the suicide attacks in pakistan but at the same time they've assisted historical militant groups that operated in afghanistan and kashmir in india. >> host: when you say they mean state support? >> guest: even elements of the pakistan state have provided assistance to militant groups. >> host: out of federal budgets? >> guest: whenever of budgets for those purposes i guess. >> host: mark moyar. >> guest: you got your the pakistan have used afghanistan in the context of their troubled relationship with india and may have viewed that as something of an insurance policy and strategic rear area. there is still suspicion among pakistan because in the past as we work with afghanistan we've been cyclical. they too were upset about the
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way we abandon afghanistan after the soviets left so they are i think to some extent still hedging their bets about how long is the u.s. going to be their undoing need to have taliban on our side at some point in the future. >> host: so the obama administration, how has addressed the pakistan question? >> guest: i think they've been doing a pretty good job thus far. i think most of its -- most of the right to work is going on behind closed doors but clearly we have seen some good cooperation from them, we saw the address of the number to taliban figure recently. >> host: that wasn't just happenstance? >> guest: i don't think so. i think a lot of people would say that the public and have arrested him earlier. again we're doing a better job now incorporating with them in it we are providing more assistance to them which i think is making more cooperative. >> host: there's another side to this equation that these are
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our nato allies and the me bring that in by reading this e-mail that we got -- it's addressed to seth jones. we met in spit a lot and when i escorted to end at -- i were strategic reform at the a&p and have ology since. at afford to read your book as i will be returning to afghanistan in a couple of. my question, how do we deal with whether i believe it is the other center of gravity in the war. the populations of the western democracies and the growing afghanistan fatigue? to believe the west has the will to sustain a major effort for private counterinsurgency lives and how do we get the word out on the positive aspects of improvements over the last two years? you have the respect of the u.s. armed forces, things for which you do. >> guest: free question from every soldier. in i would say this is a very
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important question. what we have seen with some countries with the canadiens for example of is a degreasing commitment to afghanistan. they deployed a range of forces to kandahar and there are now primarily in and around kandahar city. we have seen the dutch long-term commitment to the provinces waning. germany, the german population has expressed wavering commitment over the long run. i would just say two things -- one is i think the bulk of the effort in the insecure parts of the afghanistan will increasingly be a u.s. effort. with help from some other countries like the kabul -- british but i do not believe and in the ideal world i love it but i don't believe these countries will send forces into areas of deep-seated insecurity. i just think that's the reality. the second thing though is i do
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think there are areas we can still continue to ask for assistance. some of the european countries have very good john got very tight police forces. the french, the italians, finding ways to get more community help train police forces even if it's not in the most insecure areas can be helpful. so there are ways to continue to get allies on board and i think of this war begins to turn, looking like potentially in a position to turn, european population support may actually be the change. >> host: last call for our guests, daniel from maryland, please go ahead. >> guest: this is especially interesting program and i think c-span for its continuing excellence. i am wondering we do here as you mentioned a few moments ago we hear a great deal about the significance and problematic distrust between certain
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elements at least of the pakistan intelligence and that karzai government is not of the larger pashtuns community. and am wondering if any of you perhaps mr. jones especially know of any attempts over to an otherwise to arrange direct communications or even a back channel communications between of those elements of the pakistan intelligence and the karzai government and/or other centers of leadership in this suspicious pashtuns community? hazmat short answers, start with mark moyar. >> guest: i think there have been instances of that that have been going on quietly ended to think i would just like to make the point that karzai of all his faults he does have a certain moral authority and the most unified figure in the country and i think he's someone who
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potentially is capable of preparing certain compromises with elements of the taliban. >> guest: i think there have been efforts in particular actually to improve the relationship between president karzai, leslie isi but more president zadari in civilian and leadership of pakistan. in that sense reaching out to the civilian side can help influence the military and intelligence and this is the way we have seen the pakistan after a relationship really began to develop those mac finally this to be two, you have 20 seconds, please have the authors give synopsis of their books at the end. i missed the first portion of your show. seth jones. >> guest: my book looks at the question of why the insurgency began in the afghanistan after the u.s. overthrow. i looked at a couple of actors, one of the collapsing governance in afghanistan including corruption issues. and then focus particular on ways in the last chapter of
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stemming the insurgency in developing an itinerant counterinsurgency efforts. >> guest: line consists of a series of case studies one being an afghanistan and basically argues that leadership comes down to a question of which side has better leaders in certain areas of leadership and identify how do we get those kind of people into positions of authority. >> host: mark moyar, seth jones, thank you for being on booktv in prime time to discuss the afghanistan war. >> guest: thank you. >> host: coming up to more hours of booktv in prime time this evening. up next is michael steele, chairman of the gop, at the reagan library recently talking about his new book the 12 step program for defeating the obama agenda. following that you will hear from to its surprise winning economist justin let's on or after words program, his newest book is called a free fall. he's interviewed by laurie walletf


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